TEARS filled the courtroom after three Reading men were sent to a young offenders’ institute for multiple offences of theft.

Fraser Banham, 19, Kieron Evans, 23, and Armani Robbins, 20, were sentenced at Reading Crown Court on Monday (June 19) for varying counts of theft as well as counts of conspiracy to commit thefts across Berkshire, Oxfordshire and in Bristol.

There also charges of harassment, battery and attempted battery.

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The thefts mostly included bikes, pedal bikes and electric bikes where the men worked ‘as a team’ to carry out the offences.

All of the thefts took place between May and November 2022 starting with a motorbike being taken from Reading on May 13. On August 26, another motorcycle was taken from Reading following by an electric bike stolen from Oxford on September 17.

A few days later on September 24, another electric bike was taken from Oxford. In November, there were attempts to steal from The Programme in Bristol.

The charges relating to conspiracy to commit a burglary/theft occurred between May 5 and November 30. There were also some counts of harassments as some passers-by were ‘intimated’ by the group in order to carry out thefts during the day.

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Sentencing Judge Sarah Campbell said: “Acting as a team, you carried out a series of thefts and burglaries – particularly of bikes, pedal bikes and electric bikes.

“You committed these offences in groups of twos and fours. You sometimes wore clothing to conceal your identity and while one used an angle grinder the other kept look out.

“On two occasions, intimidate was employed to ensure you were successful when carrying out thefts in broad daylight.”

Banham, of Aveley Walk, Reading, was sentenced to 28 months in a young offenders’ institute. He had 10 counts of theft, four counts of burglary, one count of attempted theft, one count of attempted burglary and one count of common assault.

Evans, of Newton Road, Newbury, was sentenced to 28 months in a young offenders’ institute. He had four counts of theft, four counts of burglary and one count of attempted theft of a motor vehicle.

Robbins, of Amity Street, Reading, was the only defendant not in custody and appeared in the dock. Judge Campbell considered whether his sentence could be sentenced but argued that due to the seriousness of the offending, a custodial sentence was appropriate.

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He was given 20 months in a young offenders’ institute. He had five counts of theft and two counts of burglary.

Tears and screams could be heard from the public gallery from family members as Robbins was taken into custody.